Expedia Profit Rises 23%
Expedia Inc.'s third-quarter earnings rose 23% amid higher bookings and increases in hotel and car rental revenue. A prolonged travel slump has hurt online travel-booking companies like Expedia. The industry has been dropping booking fees to capture more business from airlines' Web sites, though the move eliminates a valuable revenue source. Major online travel agencies also have provided some price guarantees and have been offering more flight-and-hotel packages, boosting their market share, though it is unclear whether they can maintain their momentum once the economy improves.